Children need healthy meals to learn. Duplin County Schools offer healthy meals every school day. Breakfast costs $1.00; lunch costs $1.85. Your children may qualify for free meals or for reduced price meals. Reduced price is $.30 for breakfast and $.40 for lunch.
1. Do I need to fill out an application for each child? NO. CompleteONEFree and Reduced Price School Meals Application forALL DUPLIN COUNTY SCHOOLS’ STUDENTSin your household. We cannot approve an application that is not complete, so be sure to fill out all required information, or it will be returned to you for completion. Be sure to check the “no income” box if your child does not have their own income. Failing to check this box will require us to return this application to you for completion. Return the completed application to your child’s school as soon as possible.
2. If your child received free or reduced meal benefits last school year, they will continue to receive these benefits throughOCTOBER 5, 2012, based on last year’s eligibility, or until your child’s new application is processed. You must complete a new form for this school year, or your children’s benefits will cease on OCTOBER 8, 2012, and you will be responsible for full payment of your child’s meals.
3. Should I fill out an application if I received a letter THIS SCHOOL YEAR saying my children have been approved for free meals?No, if you received a letter from the school stating your child has been DIRECTLY CERTIFIED for free meals, it is not necessary to complete an application for free or reduced price meals this school year. Please read the letter you received carefully and follow the instructions. Call your child’s school if you have questions.
4. My child’s application was approved last year. Do I need to fill out another one? YES. Your child’s application is only good for that school year and during the first few days of this school year. You must send in a new application unless you received a letter indicating your children are eligible for the new school year.
5. Who can get free meals?Children in households receiving benefits from Food and Nutrition Services (FNS, formerly Food Stamps) or TANF/Work First benefits can get free meals regardless of your income. Also, your children can get free meals if your household’s gross income is within the free limits on the Federal Income Guidelines.
6. Can Foster Children get free meals?Yes, foster children that are under the legal responsibility of a foster care agency or court, are eligible for free meals. Any foster child in the household is eligible for free meals regardless of the household’s income.
7. Can homeless, runaway, and migrant children get free meals? Please call B.G. Kennedy, Homeless Coordinator, at (910) 296-6645 or Phillip Middleton, Migrant Coordinator, at (910) 296-6604 to see if your child(ren) qualify, if you have not been informed that they will get free meals. Completing the meal application and checking the category is not sufficient--this must be confirmed in writing by the homeless liaison or migrant coordinator for Duplin County Schools.
8. Who can get reduced price meals? Your children can get low cost meals if your household income is within the reduced price limits on the Federal Eligibility Income Chart, shown on this application.
9. I get WIC. Can my child(ren) get free meals? Not automatically, children in households participating in WICmaybe eligible for free or reduced meals. Please fill out the attached application with requested income information.
10. Will the information I give be checked? Yes, we may ask you to send written proof of all of your household income and members.
11. If I don’t qualify now, may I apply later? Yes. You may apply at any time during the school year if your household size goes up, income goes down, or if you start getting FNS, TANF or other benefits. If you lose your job, your children may be able to get free or reduced price meals.
12. What if I disagree with the school’s decision about my application? You may contact Sue Sloan, Child Nutrition Director, with any questions you may have about your child’s application or to schedule an appointment with the Hearing Official. You may also request a hearing by writing to Duplin County Schools, P.O. Box 128, Kenansville, NC, 28349 or calling (910) 296-8786.
13. May I apply if someone in my household is not a US citizen? Yes. You or your children do not have to be a US citizen to qualify for free or reduced price meals.
14. Who should I include as members of my household? You must includeALLpeople living in your household,related or not(such as grandparents, other relatives, or friends), along with any income they receive. You must include yourself and all children who live with you.
15. What if my income is not always the same? List the amount that you normally get. For example, if you normally get $1000 each month, but you missed some work last month and only got $900, put down that you get $1000 per month. If you normally get overtime, include it, but not if you get it only sometimes.
16. We are in the military; do we include our housing allowance as income? If your housing is part of the Military Housing Privatization Initiative, do not include your housing allowance as income. All other allowances must be included in your gross income.
17. My spouse is deployed to a combat zone. Is their combat pay counted as income?No, if the combat pay is received in addition to basic pay because of deployment and it wasn’t received before deployment, combat pay is not counted as income.
18. My family needs more financial assistance. Are there other programs we might apply for?To find out how to apply for Food and Nutrition Services, formerly known as the Food Stamp Program or other assistance benefits, contact your local assistance office or call The Careline phone number (1-800-662-7030).
If you have other questions or need help, please call your child’s Assistant Principal, the Cafeteria Manager at your child’s school, or the Child Nutrition Director at the Board of Education, (910) 296-8786. Si necesita ayunda por favor llame al Director de la escuela, a la cafeteria de la escuela, o a la Oficina de Nutricion en la Junta de Educacion (910) 296-8786.
Sue Sloan, Child Nutrition Director